Redeemer University - Christian university changes everything. Starting with you.          
Skip Navigation Links
Seeking God?

Visit this room for up-to-date news, commentary and discussion

The Shack - a Modern Pilgrim's Progress

Privately, and in the media, The Shack generates conversations.

The Shack is #1 with Barnes & Noble and has been #1 on the New York Times best seller list for seven weeks. For a novel that was rejected by Christian and secular publishers and was published “privately,” its sales of $1.7 million to date are astounding. But among Christian groups there is discussion and some controversy concerning its content.

Dr. Syd Hielema, chaplain at Redeemer University College in Ancaster, says The Shack is a good read even though it “would have benefited from a good literary and theological edit.” Royal Hamel, writing for the Guelph Mercury, asks, “Does the God portrayed in The Shack speak with the same voice as the God of the Bible? Sadly, in many instances She/He does not.” He also recommends it as good reading.

But what does the author say? Phil Callaway, on behalf of Servant magazine, a publication of Prairie Bible Institute, interviewed the author who explains why he wrote The Shack. Concerning the controversy, he says, “It’s different for different theological perspectives…. The Southern Baptists spent two weeks going through the book with their theologians … and then issued a statement that they found nothing of questionable theology and nothing unorthodox.”

With the beginning of the school year we’ve moved on, and the Beijing summer Olympics are a memory. But religious oppression continues to haunt Chinese Christians. “Let’s vow to continue praying for China after the Olympics, especially for its government leaders and its Christians,” exhorts Bruce J. Clemenger, president of The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada. In spite of the persecution, Chinese Christians continue to thrive. The dichotomy was especially highlighted during the Olympics. Faith Today explores reasons why this situation exists.

In addition this week, an encouraging commentary on Canadian Christianity by Brian Stewart, one of Canada’s most experienced journalists who has hosted “CBC News: World View,” and been senior correspondent for CBC’s The National. In every disaster worldwide, he says, Christians are always there working even before he arrives. Even so, we are urged to do more.

Please scroll down for additional stories, and have a good week.


Daina Doucet
Online Editor
Write us at:


Other New Articles This Week

Canadian and U.S. Elections Engage Faith Differently
As the Canadian and U.S. election campaigns forge ahead, observers have noted key differences in the ways faith is presented publicly in the two countries.

Hans Vanderwerff: Calling and Comfort
Toronto’s newspapers debated Messianic Judaism. Protestors demonstrated. There were bomb threats. Nevertheless, their congregation nearly doubled.

Grown Men Cry Too
When his daughter left for university tears and nostalgia caught him entirely unaware. “Is it nostalgia for their youth or mine that makes me pause? he asks.

Where There’s Brokenness, There’s Beauty
“The Church’s response to homosexuality is culture’s litmus test to the reality of our faith. Where we fail to love homosexuals, we fail the Gospel” (Brian Pengelly).

Raising the Bar: How Parents Can Fix Education
It’s time for a radical change in your local schools — a specific change that only parents can bring about.

Violence Against Christians Increasing in India
Still reeling from violence in Orissa, India’s Christians suffered major blows in two other states recently.





  • Redeemer University - Christian university changes everything. Starting with you.

Visit our Marketplace

Support the EFC ministry by using our Amazon links